New etcher update

Dick Crane rcrane at
Wed Jan 28 17:11:08 PST 2004

stsetch users,

I would like to give you an update concerning the status of the new STS
HRM tool installation.

What has been accomplished:
1. Mechanical installation project was defined, set to bid, contract
awarded, and P.O. cut.
2. Permits were applied for at Santa Clara County.
3. Tool and process was proven and accepted in England.
4. Electrical power work was completed over the holiday break.
5. Tool was shipped and received at Stanford.

Action needed:
1. Complete the main mechanical permit.
2. Install gas, vacuum, and cooling water lines.
3. Final county inspection.
4. STS field service completes final hookup and operational checks.
5. STS process engineering brings up process.
6. Define allowed processes.

1. County issues permit, earliest date: mid February (the permitting
process has been going for 3+ months, so this is a guess)
2. Mechanical work: 10-14 days after permit is issued, (end of
3. Final inspection and OK to use tool: 1-3 days.
4. STS field service work: 10 working days, (mid March?).
5. STS process engineering work: 10 working days, (end of March?).
6. STS HRM ready to use, (end of March?).

Why these installations take so long:
1. Any tool installation requires a Santa Clara County construction
permit. As part of the campus-wide General Use Permit (GUP) agreement,
the School of Engineering has been asked to lead by example. The various
building codes require permits for operations as simple as running new
N2 lines. Santa Clara County does not have experience in permitting fabs
and toxic gas/hazardous materials in general. All of the fabs in silicon
valley are under city jurisdiction. SNF's permits applications are among
the first of their kind for the county to deal with. Recent legislation
holds individual inspectors personally liable for incorrect permits so
they a bit shy about new areas.
2. Stanford purchasing requires multiple vendor bidding for the install
contract (can't simply use our regular contractor) and Stanford's new
Oracle accounting system has been problematic.
3. New equipment installation work is a second priority before
maintaining currently operational tools.
4. The tool owner (maintenance side) has retired and the new person
starts February 2. Maintenance and installation work is less time
effective during this transition period.

While this note won't speed up installation, I hope it clarifies what is
currently happening. As I receive more definite permitting date, I will
keep you notified.

Thanks for your patience,


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